Indian thespian was featured in Brit series, films
Zohra Sehgal, a veteran Bollywood character actress, who was featured in such English-language films as “Bend It Like Beckham,” “The Mystic Masseur” and “Mistress of Spices” as well as Hindi hits like “Hum dil de chuke sanam,” “Kal ho naa ho” and “Cheeni Kum” died Thursday in a New Delhi hospital of a heart attack. She was 102 years old.
A favorite of helmer Gurinder Chadha, Sehgal played a censorious grandmother who later unbends in “Bhaji on the Beach,” as well as a fun-loving older relative in “Bend It Like Beckham” and “Mistress of Spices,” which was written by Chadha and directed by her husband, Paul Berges. With her charming smile and twinkling eyes, she made the perfect aged relative in film and TV.
Born Sahibzadi Zohra Begum Mumtaz-ullah Khan, the vivacious woman preferred a career over marriage at a time when that was considered revolutionary. She studied ballet in Dresden, Germany, but after meeting classical Indian dancer Uday Shankar, she became a principal dancer in his troupe in 1935 and later became a choreographer. She married a fellow dancer, Kameshwar Sehgal, over her parents’ objections (he was Hindu, she Muslim) and they had two children. Sehgal also taught at Shankar’s dance academy in Almora, Punjab, until India was partitioned in 1947 and the family moved to Bombay.
For 14 years she was part of the Prithvi Theater, run by Bollywood icon Prithivraj Kapoor. From there she segued to the Indian People’s Theater Assn., making her film debut in 1946 with “Dharti ke lal.” He next film, Chetan Anand’s “Neecha nagar” won the Grand Prix at the 1946 Cannes Film Festival. Her last film was Sony’s “Saawariya,” directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, in 2007.
The first episode of Breakfast To Dinner features one of Bollywood’s top celebrities of all time – Shah Rukh Khan. We also take you into the Mannat – Shah Rukh Khan’s house in Bandra. Shah Rukh Khan’s new movie Chennai Express is going to release soon featuring Deepika Padukone as well and directed by Rohit Shetty.
With 40-41 Cr weekend, Holiday has clearly won the hearts of Movie lovers and Akshay Kumar mania has gripped the nation. This thread is created to capture the box office run of this phenomenal success.
Holiday May Emerge A HIT – Very Good Sunday
Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty is looking at a very good Sunday with huge growth all over and could even emerge a HIT with a chance of hitting the 100 crore nett if Monday comes up with the expected numbers and the film goes on a normal trend from there.
Akshay’s interviews & videos all in one thread!!! Feast for all movie lovers.
Interview 1 post Holiday release:
Akshay Kumar on ‘Holiday’: This is one character I’m gonna be sad to say goodbye to
Akshay Kumar’s new avatar as an army-man in Holiday- A Soldier Is Never Off Duty is among his most accomplished performances in recent times.
Your new film Holiday features you in a role of an Army Officer who takes on a proposed terror attack during his holiday. How close is this character to the real Akshay Kumar?
You know what? It’s not so much about how close this character is to me right now. It’s more about a deadly fantasy version of life that I would have, had I not been an actor. Playing this role was so unbelievably intriguing; it was like I got to play my inner yin & yang. One minute I am a truly patriotic man, who fights for his country as well as his family, respecting all who walk in my path, then Boom! Even the meanest people in the world don’t know what’s hit them when I get my hands on them.
In the film your character feels a counter-terrorist must think like a terrorist?
Yes, because, in order to create good, I have to become evil. It was like playing the best reality video game ever! I’m the hero that gets to hunt down, crack codes, kill and torture Mumbai’s enemies, while falling in love, protecting families of fellow comrades, and saving my city from utter destruction. I couldn’t dream of a meatier role. I literally had the experience of a lifetime. This is one character I’m gonna be sad to say goodbye to.
I remember you telling me that if you hadn’t been an actor you’d have joined the army. Was this role a kind of wish-fulfillment for you?
Absolutely! Being Virat Bakshi in Holiday, was something I’ve waited a really long time to experience. As a bonus I got the genius director A. R. Murugadoss, an extremely intelligent script, the precious opportunity to play an army officer, a gritty subject, the demanding substance of my character from start to finish, showing the nation what people are prepared to go through in order to keep us safe, and then I had the film’s inviolable message to put across.
‘No matter what happens, we will not be threatened by anyone, because we are India, and we are united, no-one shall cause bloodshed in our country, and get away with it, not while we still have our Indian Army to protect us!’
I personally believe Holiday deserves an entertainment tax exemption for its hard-hitting message on counter-terrorism. Your comments?
That would be a fine thing, and it’d be a wonderful gesture, my dear friend. But even as one of the producers of the film, I’m not here to make unforeseen profits from our army’s good name, or its unconditional efforts to guard us, even if we are promoting anti-terrorism.
What is the harm in making an added profit?
From this very moment, I don’t care what the outcome of this film is. Some times in life, you do things for the greater good. Well, this is one of those times for me right now! I made this film with the honest intention of not only bringing awareness on the horrendous undercover actions of terrorists surrounding our very cities, but to also shed light on the fact that we are protected to the best of our ability, and we should not take for granted how peacefully we sleep in our beds at night because we’re protected by the army and the police.
Not all sections of our people are protected?
Fear for your own life is a very sad way to live, and there are many cultures out there still living in fear. We are lucky to be alive and blessed to have men and women join the army and keep us from harm’s way, and when the bullets hit the soldiers, they stand like warriors to face it.
Your performance in Holiday shows a great deal of maturity, restraint, conviction and honesty. How hard did you work towards achieving authenticity in your performance?
It’s difficult for me to say it was hard work, when every bit of me was absorbed into getting every detail right. I just kept thinking about how lucky I was to be able to portray this terrific character. When I took my family to see it, they couldn’t believe it was me, they saw a side to me they didn’t know existed. I’ve played so many hero roles over the years. But nothing compared to this. I thoroughly enjoyed the attention to detail, the plot, the circumstances, the twist, the impulse to choose a path that could kill thousands of innocent lives.
You are very different here from your comic roles?
This is ‘me’ when I’m serious. When I really set my mind to something I am as deep and calculating as my character. Except that I don’t walk around with a loaded gun like my character does. Do you even know what it’s like for an adrenaline junkie actor like me to get my hands on something so meaty and so vivid? I will thank Murugadoss and his silent but violent brain for creating something so brilliant to play, for the rest of my career.
How different are the acting skills that you apply to a film like Holiday as compared with the out-and-out fantasy entertainers?
It’s a completely different territory. My efforts in Holiday differ so much from my efforts in films like It’s Entertainment! I know the world sees me as that funny guy who can kick and jump. But there is so much more to me than that, given the opportunity. In Holiday you get to see the Akshay Kumar I rarely get to play. But in my comedy films you get to see me at my happiest, in my comfort zone, full of life, with only one thing on my mind, that’s to entertain the masses. These performances would never win awards. But I get to win over millions of hearts. To me there’s no greater gift in life than the power to make people laugh. This film is special because it’s a one in a million. Right now my wife is so proud of my work in this film that breaking records will never compete with her appreciation. There’s nothing more precious than the family’s approval.
Your next release It’s Entertainment is, in fact, a complete departure from Holiday in mood and intention. Which do you find harder to do, the Holiday or the It’s Entertainment kind of acting?
To be honest Holiday was far harder to perform! To restrain a comedian for 90 days is very difficult. In It’s Entertainment, I was in my element, nothing was stopping me from having full-on fun. But in Holiday I got to be someone I never get to be. I left my world at home, and came to work with one notion and one notion only. I’d ask my director, ‘How do we catch the bad guys today, Mr M?’
You sound really happy?
I am the luckiest actor in Bollywood right now, forget collections, I’m talking opportunities. In one year, I get to be an army officer in Holiday, I get to play a dog’s life in a man’s world in It’s Entertainment, a secret- service agent in Baby and a college professor who moonlights as a vigilante in Gabbar. I couldn’t ask for better scripts, better stories or better people to work with. I really need to touch my mother’s feet right now and thank her for all her blessings.
Your action sequences in Holiday strive to achieve a new level of authenticity. Do you think action sequences in our cinema have now come of age?
I think we have some of the best reality combat action sequences in the world. Thanks to films like Boss, Holiday and Dabangg, we have action to be proud of, not fancy trickery, not powerful illusions, just raw, in your face, fight-till-the-end kind of action, the real respectful kind. But we also have films like Krrish 3 and Robot, where the special effects were beyond anything anyone had imagined would exist in Indian Cinema. We are part of an entertainment industry to be reckoned with right now.
You’ve recently been shooting for Neeraj Pandey’s new film Baby. How much of a comfort level do you share with Neeraj after Special 26 and what ‘special’ magic can the audience expect from the two of you this time?
In my whole career, I never thought directors such as Neeraj Pandey and Murugadoss would ever consider me good enough to bring life to their precious scripts to. But now, not only I am working back to back with them, I am thoroughly enjoying the experience. They have both captured me in a light no-one thought I could capture. Well looks like you’re never too old to learn.
You’ve now completed 24 years on the film industry and you’re still a top player. To what do you attribute your longevity?
My discipline, my parents’ blessings, and this unusual need to please as many people as possible before I die! I have the best family a man could wish for, a dream job that I slave my back-side off for everyday of the week. I have a career that was so far out of my reach that walking to China seemed more possible.
How do you explain your phenomenal success?
The secret of achieving success is, don’t take a day in your life, or any situation, or opportunity and definitely not a person willing to trust you, for granted. Then I truly believe great things can happen to you. My career isn’t all about luck. It’s about how hard I tried even on the days I thought I couldn’t get out of bed and fight one more time. The point is, I did, and I did it with such conviction, nothing and no-one has ever been able to stop me, pull me down, or take away from me what I have rightly earned.
When you look back on your early films do you feel you’ve made a vast improvement as an actor?
Believe me, if I hadn’t, I wouldn’t be here now. I was no fool. I knew I couldn’t act when I joined this film industry. But just like in karate you don’t stop just because you were hit to the ground, you get up, until no-one can knock you down, I didn’t stop trying to learn acting.
Who among your contemporaries and juniors do you regard as your competition?
Everyone! No-one is less than me, no-one is better than me, for there is only one of me. I’m the one whom I have to compete with. My contemporaries are who I work with, my peers are my fuel to better me and my juniors are my ticket out of here. It will always be a dog eat dog industry. But I don’t mind sharing my bowl. That’s the difference between the others and me, and that’s what matters.
Hahahaha…All Akshay Kumar fans are rejoicing. There is another SuperHit round the corner….and guess what a solo release after IPL mania
I am very excited about the theme that Akki has chosen – Sleeper Cells. With ARM as director and a winning combo…this film is all set to join 150Cr club.
I am creating this post to have news of this all important film.
Just wanted to share this song which I have been playing on infinite loop on all my devices and still cant get enough of it.
Do share if you know of similar songs.
Election Results 2014: Within an hour of the start of counting, the BJP and allies seem set to form the next government under Narendra Modi. The BJP-led NDA is leading in 241 seats. The Congress is lagging far behind; in Amethi, Rahul Gandhi is trailing.
If this trend continues, the BJP-led NDA could end up with almost 290 seats of the 543 Lok Sabha seats, a very safe majority. Congress and allies could get 124 to 131 and Others, 129-136. This projection is based only on the trends right now. Some of these could change in later rounds of voting. (India Decides 2014: Track Live Results Here)
The Congress and allies are ahead in only 68 seats and, importantly, are trailing in many seats they had had won last time. The BJP is gaining most of those seats. (Know all your winning candidates)
In crucial Uttar Pradesh, the BJP is way ahead and is gaining seats. The Congress, Samajwadi Party and BSP are struggling in single digits.(Track state wise results here)
In Seemandhra, Chandrababu Naidu’s TDP and Jagan Reddy’s YSR Congress are in a neck and neck contest. In Telangana, the TRS has taken an early lead.
In Tamil Nadu J Jayalalithaa’s AIADMK is giving no other party elbow room in the leads available. The Congress is leading in one.
In Karnataka, the BJP is leading. In Kerala the Congress-led UDF and the Left-led LDF are neck and neck.
Narendra Modi’s Gujarat, which hopes to give the country its next Prime Minister, looks set for a BJP sweep. As does BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh.
Before a single vote was counted, posters appeared overnight across Varanasi congratulating Narendra Modi, the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate, for his victory. Mr Modi has contested from Varanasi. (Party summary of Elections 2014)
Exit polls said the Congress faces its worst ever defeat after 10 years in power. The Congress’ chief spokesperson Ajay Maken said this morning that the party was not “willing to concede defeat,” but said he took “responsibility for failure of the Congress media strategy.”
The BJP’s best showing so far was in elections in 1998 and 1999 when it won 182 seats and ran the country until a shock defeat at the hands of the Congress in 2004.
It’s one of the most highly-anticipated movie sequels of all time.
And on Thursday, Bollywood actor Irrfan Khan was pictured on the set of Jurassic World as filming kicked off on the set of the fourth movie in the franchise in Hawaii.
Khan, who will play the owner of the dinosaur theme park in the upcoming film, was seen shooting scenes in Honolulu Zoo, Hawaii, where a variety of props were also seen being loaded onto the set.
Among the items being taken to the set were a series of numbered buggies – similar to the ones used to tour the park in original 1993 movie – and a tube which was covered in a sticker bearing the warning ‘electric fence’.
Director Colin Trevorrow previously revealed that the film will be set 22 years after the first Jurassic Park movie back in 1993.
He wrote on Twitter: ‘This is a new sci-fi terror adventure set 22 years after the horrific events of Jurassic Park.’
Sonam Kapoor, the fashionista admires the ethereal, elusive, dynamic Rekha. Sonam has always admired Rekha and has taken inspiration from her. Now Sonam gets a chance to step into the large shoes of Rekha in the remake of the 1980’s classic Khoobsurat.
Sonam started her career with Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Saawariya which was not exactly a blockbuster. Sonam’s fashion sense has been the talking point of her career. Rekha on the other hand is known for her metamorphosis into the glamorous swan, and her histrionics on screen. The evergreen Rekha is still the diva she was a couple of decades ago.
Rekha has been admired for her acting prowess in films like Khoon Bhari Maang, Silsila and Umrao jaan. Sonam has recently started her career and has done films like Raanjhana, I Hate Luv Story and Aisha.
Bollywood’s power couple Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai cast their vote, a few hours before the Lok Sabha Polls in Maharashtra ended.
Abhishek Bachchan, posted a selfie of himself and Aishwarya showing their ink-stained finger and urging others to vote. The actor couple came to vote with Amitabh Bachchan and Rajya Sabha MP Jaya Bachchan.
Meanwhile, Bollywood’s King Shah Rukh Khan visited the polling booth sans wife Gauri, just few minutes before the polling ended in Mumbai.
Director Sabbir Khan’s Heropanti not only marks debut of Jackie Shroff’s son Tiger but also 22 newcomers.
A leading publication reports that the director wanted his lead actors Tiger and Kriti Sanon to feel comfortable and not conscious shooting with senior artistes.
Director Sabbir Khan’s Heropanti marks debut of 22 newcomers.The publication also quoted Sabbir as saying , “I’d worked with Nadiadwala Grandsons as an assistant before directing my first film. All their projects including my directorial debut featured A-list artistes. The reason I went with an all-new cast for this one is that it required a certain freshness. And after watching the edited version, I can confidently say it wasn’t a mistake.”
Is it really possible for the Three Khan‘s to be under one roof again? The last time the three of them Aamir Khan, Salman Khan and Shah Rukh Khan were together in one room, was at the premiere of 3 Idiots at Wadala. The moment was awkward and tensed, and yes Aamir Khan did try to make the effort to patch them up, but in vain. This rare moment might soon see the light of day as producer Sajid Nadiadwala throws the success bash of his films 2 States and Highway.
Confirming the success party, Producer Director Sajid Nadiadwala who is currently shooting for his upcoming directorial debut with Salman Khan‘s Kick in Poland said, “By the grace of God this has so far been a fantastic year for my production house. When we produced Highway, Imtiaz Ali and I planned it as a small experimental quickie while we waited for Ranbir Kapoor’s dates later during this year. How would we know Highway would be such a success?! It is one of my proudest achievements. And now I hear roaring reports of 2 States“.
Sajid Nadiadwala has taken his production house to the next level with back to back releases lined up. Along with his directorial venture with Salman Khan,making huge waves already, 2014 definitely is going to be a great year for Sajid.
Aamir Khan’s uneasy relationship with the publishing industry is well established. His mistrust of authors keen to tell his story their way, or probe into his personal life and ferret information about the aspects of his life he is not comfortable talking about – there are enough and more anecdotes from authors who have written about the star.
The most recent example being Christina Daniels’ book, I’ll Do It My Way, which was carefully positioned as a filmography rather than a biography, of the actor who refused to meet the author or help with any kind of inputs.
Aamir however has made an exception, we hear, upon the request of the man who is very special to him – Mansoor Khan. A book on the making of Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak the film that was important for all those involved with it, is in the making. And the accidental filmmaker, writer and passionate economist who is a famous recluse helped author Gautam Chintamani crack the Aamir code.
The result, we are told, was an uninterrupted session with the elusive star, who came up with some fabulous insights and inputs. Did you know, for instance, that at the time of making QSQT, Mansoor was reluctant to tear himself away from his other pet project, the screenplay of Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikander, because he was suffering from a writer’s block?